Awarded 91 points by Wine Spectator, Château Sainte Eulalie’s 2014 La Livinière La Cantilène once again demonstrates why La Livinière is a special cru and the Languedoc’s most prized appellation. The wine’s deep, nearly impenetrable robe beckons the taster, but it is La Cantilène's seductive aromatics, profound flavors, and beautifully integrated tannins that make it hard to resist. The redolent scents and savory flavors of woodland berries, cassis, wild herbs, and ripe plum tantalize the senses. Yet, these are just the 2014 La Cantilène's opening act as this wine evolves slowly in the glass. Savory spice and hints of dark chocolate emerge with aeration and are coupled with smooth, almost velvety tannins. Bold in flavor but with nary an edge, the Coustals’ 2014 La Livinière La Cantilène is seductive with layers of pure fruit garnished with deft touches of spice and herb to caress the mouth and make the thirsty tongue beg for more. For optimal enjoyment, afford Château Sainte-Eulalie’s 2014 Minervois La Livinière La Cantilène thirty minutes of aeration before consuming it at cool room temperature (60º-64º F). Salut!
Like the Coustal’s previous offerings of La Cantilène, the 2014 vintage was made to accompany the finest fare from France’s most renowned chefs. La Cantilène is undeniably the Coustal’s most prestigious wine and it is featured in a growing number of France’s top restaurants. Roast quail, served with a savory wild mushroom sauce; roast leg of lamb, rubbed with garlic, olive oil, and Provençal herbs; and authentic Provençal cassoulet all get our nod to accompany Château Sainte-Eulalie’s delectable Minervois. However, one need not be a Cordon Bleu chef to highlight La Cantilène's many attributes. Simply prepared dishes made with chicken, beef, lamb, or pork won’t steal the thunder from this superb Minervois. Traditional Mediterranean favorites made with beans or lentils pair admirably with Château Sainte-Eulalie’s flagship wine, too, as do cheese and tomato laden dishes such as Eggplant Parmigiana and lasagna. Bon appétit!
Château Sainte Eulalie quickly became one of our favorite properties in Languedoc and a favorite among our membership. Under the ownership of Laurent and Isabelle Coustal, Château Sainte Eulalie has joined the top echelon of Languedoc producers. This dynamic couple has resurrected and restored the ancient Minervois vineyards surrounding their domaine above the village of La Livinière, including the old vines at Château Eulalie. The Coustals grow Syrah, Grenache, Carignan, and Cinsault, the four traditional and most important grape varietals of Languedoc and the neighboring Rhóne Valley.
Isabelle and Laurent Coustal serve as winemakers and artisans in residence at their 34 hectare (84 acre) Château Sainte Eulalie estate. They fashion several wines from old vines, some of which are a century old, including Plaisir d’Eulalie and La Cantilène from La Livinière (this month’s selection). La Livinière has long been regarded as the finest terroir in Minervois, but it has now been recognized as an official “Cru de Languedoc” and is entitled to its own appellation. La Cantilène is Château Sainte Eulalie’s flagship wine and, like all of Château Sainte Eulalie’s wines, it is hand-harvested from old vines and the product of organic viticulture, and is Certified Sustainable. It is bottled unfiltered in order to preserve its freshness and rich, haunting flavors. After more than a decade of outstanding work at Château Eulalie, the Coustals have earned a reputation as two of Languedoc’s finest and most consistent winemakers.
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